Case Studies

Modica, Italy, 36°51′ N 14°45′ E

Modica has a medium sized historic centre set in a deep valley in South East Sicily at 36N degrees latitude, which cuts across the largest portion of the Mediterranean. Its relatively small size allows for a good number of data types to be analysed without the great volume that a large city would generate.

  • Its population, 55.000 inhabitants, and relative compact size and topographical and historic conformation make it representative for most small and medium sized towns in the areas of the Mediterranean that are likely to suffer first and more severely from climate change.
  • It has a complex topography, with deep valleys, plateaus and hills which allows for different scenarios that can be applied to other towns throughout the region and beyond.
  • It is a Unesco World Heritage site, a benchmark for the quality of the historic urban environment. The historic layering of the town allows us to look back at successful pre-industrial vernacular solutions, as well as the effect of later urban and architectural interventions.